CVS Caremark Research Finds Medication Adherence Can Improve Outcomes and Reduce Costs for Patients with Coronary Artery Disease
WOONSOCKET, R.I., March 19, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Heart disease costs the United States $108.9billion each year according to the Centers for Disease Control, but there are ways those costs can be controlled. Research published in the April issue of the American Journal of Medicine found that patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) who are adherent to their prescribed medications can save the health care system up to $868 per patient per year. The study, conducted by researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and CVS Caremark (NYSE: CVS), found a consistent trend toward improvement in coronary artery-related events, mortality, readmissions, and costs among those patients who most adhered to their medication regimens.
“Managing rising health care costs is the most pressing issue facing our health care system today,” said Troyen A. Brennan, MD, MPH, Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer of CVS Caremark. “This study affirms a consistent trend we have seen in research regarding the positive effect of improving medication adherence. Patients with chronic conditions are healthier when they adhere to their prescribed medication regimens and, as a result, the costs associated with their care are reduced.”
Are You Taking Your Medicine?
Healthcare has attracted a lot of attention in the last few years. With the American population getting older, the cost of healthcare threatening budgets, and the change of focus from treating an illness to preserving wellness, healthcare providers are finding themselves in a whole new ball game.
There are three major issues being confronted by healthcare providers today. Compliance is the degree to which a patient follows the basic instructions for a given medication. Persistence is the degree to which a patient keeps taking his or her medication over a long period of time. Adherence combines both compliance and persistence. Simply put, are you taking your medicine and are the providers following regulations as they treat you? Adherence rates are currently very low for many drug classes at around 50% Thus, pharmaceutical companies are focused on pushing adherence rates higher for their chronic care medications. Higher adherence raises pharmaceutical sales and also helps keep people healthier.